More Joint Ventures For The Post Office?

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Recent news that the U.S. Postal Service has increased revenues is just the first step toward financial solvency. The post office should continue with more joint business ventures like Amazon in expanding Sunday delivery. This could be the start of something big. Using underutilized assets and facilities on Sunday could generate badly needed revenues. This could assist in developing alternatives to the periodic increasing frequency of raising the price of a first-class stamp every few years. Why not consider going after other available, untapped potential revenue streams? Consider these untapped sources to reduce operating deficits and perhaps even turn a small profit. The U.S. Postal Service could sell advertising space on the sides of mailboxes, inside and outside the post offices along with the small jeeps, regular trucks and heavy-duty long-haul trucks. Sell off some of the valuable real estate and move to less expensive locations.

Why not join banks and fast-food restaurants that sublet space at Wal-Mart and other big-box stores to open smaller post offices? Generate both revenue and customers by subletting excess capacity at underutilized post offices to other village, town, county, city, state or federal agencies along with private sector businesses. License corporations to sponsor stamps for a fee.

Have members of Congress, state legislatures and other elected officials pay the real, full costs for their annoying frequent bulk-rate mailings to constituents. They are nothing more than free reelection campaign brochures subsidized by taxpayers.

Charge the full price for all junk mail. Future increases in the price of stamps should be directly tied to inflation.

The post office should apply free-enterprise solutions, including working with Amazon and other private sector businesses, to provide a more cost-effective product, reduce deficits and prevent more branches from closing, thus keeping its commitment to serve the public well.

—Larry Penner

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